Patriarchal pilgrimage held in Goshiv
The dismissal service in the Basilian Goshiv Monastery gathered on September 10 thousands of pilgrims. Bishops of the UGCC arrived for the dismissal service from parishes from west to east of Ukraine, far abroad - America, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, USA, Canada, Italy in Yasnaya Gora. They are so numerous because these days the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC convenes in Lviv.
According to the correspondent of RISU Natalia Paliy, during two days, September 9-10, the pilgrims in Goshiv were participating in the common worship, prayer service, and night vigils.
“We have practiced various pilgrimages since last year, and now we have the culmination of those celebrations in Ukraine,” Patriarch Sviatoslav, head of the UGCC, stressed. “Celebrating the 150th anniversary of the canonization of the Holy Josaphat Kuntsevich in the Basilica of St. Peter in Rome, we were also celebrating the jubilee of the Basilian order in Krekhov, Dobromyl and other monasteries. Today I especially want to congratulate fathers and brothers on the anniversary. We thank the Lord God that he blesses our church with a good calling to the monastic living and for the fact that you are chosen, and not just those called. Today, we feel that your reformer, my great predecessor, Metropolitan of Kyiv Josyf-Veliamin Rutskyy, was thinking about the renewal of monasticism in our entire Church. Perhaps, you face a great difficult task today. I want to turn to the young girls and boys who are looking for their way in life – we, the church, need you, our people. Today, I want to fulfill the task of the servant who calls – serve God and the church in the monastic rank. And our mission – of bishops and priests - is to help you. We also pray today for our guys at the frontline, for their mothers, who are numerous here. Let the Lord God bless our land with peace, so that we do not have to bury our sons and daughters any longer – and they dedicated themselves for God and for Ukraine.”
The pilgrims who gathered in Goshiv in Yasnaya Gora were not only from Ivano-Frankivsk region. “This is a Christian mission to teach children to be close to God,” says Mrs. Olena, who came with her family and two little sons from Lviv. “In such places, we always feel faith and how strong it is. Therefore, I would consider it even a sin to miss such an event. It is necessary for the children to be accustomed to it from the early age. We are for the first time in Goshiv and the impressions are extraordinary, there is wonderful atmosphere, it's nice, nice that there are many children here.”
“For us, this is a family pilgrimage,” Lyubomyr Strinaglyuk from Ivano-Frankivsk says. “I am here, first of all, to ask the Lord for the remission of sins. We also have a historic, unique day, because we not only celebrate the 400th anniversary of reform in the Basilian order, but also the Synod of Bishops is taking place. Our Church is developing; it needs a wise guide. Consequently, we hope that the Holy Spirit inspires church leaders to take good decisions, because we are living in a difficult time and, of course, all of the challenges we face also need to be solved at the spiritual level. With this expectation and prayer, we ask God to continue to lead our church to development, so it receives a new breath to survive through the challenges we have.”
It is with a great enthusiasm that those present at the pilgrimage in Goshiv received the famous Hryhoriy Veryovka Choir from Kyiv. The team accompanied the Hierarchical Liturgy and performed a number of well-known Ukrainian folk songs.
“We are full of emotions, after all, numerous hierarchs came here,” says Zenoviy Kurinets, the general director and artistic director of the National Honored Academic Ukrainian Choir of Hryhoriy Veryovka. “We are honored to be in such a glorious company. So many Christian people have gathered here. The heart is full of grace. We were the first to accompany the Greek Catholic Liturgy. So far we have been singing with priests of the UOC-KP. Incidentally, a week ago we visited Częstochowa, where John Paul II left his mark and where stays our Ukrainian icon of the Mother of God, which stopped Turkish invasion at one time. And in a week we got to another holy place. This is truly God's providence. I am Galician, by the way, from Golobutov, Stryi district. There His Beatitude Sviatoslav (Shevchuk) was born.”